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Saturday, 19 April 2014

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Carlisle Utd aiming to take advantage of pressure on winless Bury

Graham Kavanagh insists the heat will be on winless Bury tonight – and Carlisle United can take full advantage.

Graham Kavanagh photo
Graham Kavanagh

The Blues are aiming for a third straight away victory at Gigg Lane (kick-off 7.45pm) to banish the frustration of their home defeat to Crawley.

A win would allow United to spoil Kevin Blackwell’s first home game in charge of the rock-bottom Shakers.

And Kavanagh says the Cumbrians will be ready to capitalise if Bury’s desperation for goals leaves gaps at the other end.

“Maybe the shackles will be off us a bit,” said Greg Abbott’s No2.

“The onus will be on the home team to come out and play. Hopefully they will leave space behind which we can exploit.”

For the second away game in a row the Blues will be facing a new manager, having already ruined Mark Robins’ first game as Coventry boss with their 2-1 win at the Ricoh on September 22.

Former Leeds manager Blackwell began with a 2-2 draw at Stevenage on Saturday and is seeking to build on that with his first match at Gigg Lane tonight.

Kavanagh said: “I’m sure Kevin Blackwell will have them fighting fit, and ready to scrap for every ball.

“But we know that if we compete against teams and show our quality, we’re a match for anybody.

“We know what we have to do. We need to defend better in our defensive third, and be more clinical in the opposition third.”

Abbott’s focus in training yesterday was on plugging the defensive leaks which allowed Crawley to claim a 2-0 win at Brunton Park three days ago.

The United manager is unlikely to make wholesale changes tonight but the claims of Mike Edwards and Brad Potts for a start will be under consideration.

Up front, Kallum Higginbotham is pushing for his first start in the league since his loan move from Huddersfield.

Kavanagh, meanwhile, admits the Crawley setback has left United desperate to put things right.

“Every game is vitally important but with this one we will be trying to attain the victory that would get the Crawley game out of our systems as fast as possible,” the coach added.

“There is good competition for places in the squad. We have taken the positives from Saturday’s performance and this is a great opportunity to bounce back.”

Bury, who have taken just four points from their first nine games, are likely to include Northern Ireland striker David Healy and former Carlisle midfielder Steve Schumacher.

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